I Curse the River of Time: A Novel

I Curse the River of Time: A Novel

Per Petterson

Language: English

Pages: 240

ISBN: 0312429533

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


It's 1989 and "three monumental events twine around one another in Arvid Jansen's penumbral soul. His fifteen-year marriage is dissolving, his mother is dying of cancer, and the Berlin Wall is tumbling down. The parallels are obviousworlds are ending, internally and externallybut the analogies Petterson draws among these dramatic endings are not....I Curse the River of Time is a little like the starker reaches of the West, a little like the stonier shores of Maine, a little like Edward Hopper, a little like Raymond Carver....There is a quality that I can only call charm, or something like charm, to Petterson's essentially dark and lonely sensibility....It exerts a gravitational pull on the reader" (Stacey D'Erasmo, The New York Times Book Review).

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suddenly I could feel that my mother was there. I’m not joking, she really was and she looked at me through the damp dark in the yard of Groruddalen School, and the windows on both sides showed no sign of life at this time of night, no one leaning out of a first floor window to call something nice to me, something embracing I had longed to hear, and I knew what she was thinking: Has the boy enough about him, she thought, will he manage on his own or is he too fragile? I was convinced she believed

with an ‘A’ and had two syllables. It was hopeless, but I had picked it myself, so I guess I could not change it now. He said: ‘Good morning, comrade, you’re already off to work?’ ‘No,’ I said, ‘I’m on my way home, I’ve worked the night shift. I live there,’ I said, pointing to my window that faced the junction where we were standing. He turned to look, then turned back. ‘So you’ve done overtime,’ he said, and I said yes, I had, I was exhausted, and he said that was good, because night shifts

want to go there right away, so I turned left and walked onwards along the paths, and then approached the grave from a different direction than I usually did, this time facing the names carved into the stones, and that, of course, made the grave easier to find. She was kneeling on the gravel in front of the gravestone with the three names on it, weeding, pulling twigs and dried dead flowers from the small pots she had placed there on her last visit. The time for flowers was long gone, but no one

November, it was evening, it should have been dark, but the sun was still hanging low above the rooftops to the west, where it glowed faintly and refused to let go. I cycled past the Palads Theatre in the far north of the town. In front of the old cinema there were long shadows falling in razor sharp lines across the houses on the opposite side, but they were not long enough, not dark enough to soften this angular, insistent light. At a kiosk that was still open, there were newspapers stacked

Mogens.’ ‘What?’ I said. ‘It’s Mogens,’ he said. ‘My name’s Mogens.’ ‘Mogens,’ I said. ‘I’m Mogens. Your friend. You shouldn’t hit your friends. It’s not right.’ ‘We’re friends?’ I said. He was drunker than I’d realised. He was drunker than me. ‘Of course, we’re friends. Don’t you remember anything? I recognised you at once when I saw you on the ferry,’ said the man called Mogens in a trembling voice, but now with a sudden undertone of anger. I did not understand. He had recognised me on

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